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Cablevision's Union Fight Gets Uglier
Company Fires 25 Union Employees
by Karl Bode 12:15PM Monday Feb 04 2013
Last year Cablevision employees in Brooklyn voted to unionize for the first time in the company's history, a significant move given the fact that just 2-4% of cable technicians are unionized. The move has resulted in a contentious fight between union employees and Cablevision executives ever since, with strikes, lawsuits over union claims about sub-par Cablevision service, and battles over Sandy refund robocalls. Now Cablevision is being accused of firing 25 workers after they demanded to speak to a Cablevision executive:
CWA believes that the firings were illegal retaliation, noting that the 25 workers were all key union leaders within the workplace.

"It’s definitely illegal," says fired Cablevision worker Jerome Thompson. "[Cablevision is] basically messing with my family, my livelihood, my health benefits… What they are doing is creating an atmosphere of fear and doubt for the union. This is part of their union-busting strategy to … have all these other guys afraid to join the union or even be involved."
Cablevision insists the workers were fired simply because they refused to go to work. The workers say they were just trying use Cablevision's open door policy to "get five minutes of their time" before heading back to work.

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Bill Neilson
Arlington, VA

3 recommendations

Why some people can't seem to take a

middle-of-the-road opinion on Unions is beyond me.

Are Unions always great? No. Is having no Unions always great? No.

I have been on both sides as I was part of a Union early on in my working career and I was also (years later for a different company) on the other side fighting against the Unions. They both serve purposes if done without corruption.

Sadly, as corrupt as many Unions have become, I am not sure why anyone in their right mind would think that the corporations are any less corrupt.

The corporation that I worked for knew that most employees had spent years there and would never move on (either due to their speciality nature of their work, age, etc....) and made damn sure that they took advantage of it.

It's funny to me to always hear people claim things like "Just move on to another job!" or "The free market will work itself out!".....when, there is no actual 'free market' since the rules are written by the big boys....and no, most people can't just leave their jobs as they either have no other job available or need to stay in that area due to family or other reasons.

Unions are far from great, Corporations are far from great....but giving either anymore power than the other....is just a terrible idea, imo

Trogglus normalus

Chicago, IL

2 recommendations

This looks like it is justified.

I don't thing they realized how unionizing changes the employer/employee relationship. They just got the 1st taste of what happens when you dont follow the rules.
If the workers follow the rules then the union can protect them.

When there is a union, the company loses all flexibility and judgement and instead must blindly follow the rules with no exceptions as stated in the contract. If they make an exceptions it will get used against the company in the future by other employees.
The open door policy is for employees not union employees.

These guys need to bring their concerns to their union steward and let them negotiated with management.
Not doing the job you are being paid to do and standing outside of a VPs door is going to get you fired.

If they wanted to talk to the VP with the open door policy why did they not do so before they clocked in or after they clocked out???
Or why did they not setup a meeting with the VP in advance???
This really looks like a justified firing.